The reason is available domain name are challenging to find. Domain squatters snap up catchy or appealing domains, holding onto them like real estate but with no intent to build on their digital property. Their goal is to wait until an interested party steps forward and matches their asking price. Because squatters can operate domains for cheap — dollars per year — they can afford to amass acres of domains while waiting for attractive bids. Asking prices often run in the thousands of dollars, and reach millions of dollars for coveted domains.
The proliferation of squatters, and legitimate online businesses, means finding a free domain is extremely hard. It requires creativity and persistence, and usually involves a lot of disappointment. It can be deflating to think of the perfect domain name, only to learn it is taken.
As demoralizing as it is to see a great domain name taken, it is equally uplifting to find a free one.
Here are tips for finding a great domain name:
1)Make it easy to spell and pronounce. Difficult or tricky spelling reduces the likelihood of discovery through friends and word-of-mouth. People can’t find your site if they can’t spell it.
2) Explore alternatives. If you love a domain concept, try alternatives. Say you like “cook.com.” Consider other domain options with “cook” as the base and different beginnings and endings, such as “cookly.com” or “mycook.com.” Or see how the word translates into other languages. Perhaps you’ll like how the word looks and sounds in French or Italian.
3) Research on Google. Some words have cultural or secondary meanings. Research on Google and other sites to ensure your domain does not have negative or offensive connotations.
4) Check competitors. Look at competitors to ensure your domain name is not too similar. Besides creating user confusion, you might also invite lawsuits around trademark infringement.
5) Protect your domain. If your site has tremendous growth potential, you may also want to buy other domain extensions, or top level domains, such as .NET and .INFO and .ORG. Otherwise, competitors or squatters may buy these related extensions and try to hold you hostage in the future.
6) Use Tekiki.com for domain name suggestions. It focuses on helping users generate and brainstorm domain names. The site shows related terms, translations, and simulates word association by displaying what people say on Facebook and Twitter. Tekiki automatically generates domain alternatives with different suffixes and prefixes, and trendy misspellings (e.g., adding “ly” as a suffix).